Mark Claibourne, History Teacher & Academic Director
Throughout my adult life I have cultivated excellent communication and interpersonal skills. Whether I was creating opportunities abroad or teaching troubled teens and their parents how to effectively communicate with one another; I have repeatedly developed, tested and revised my strategies for successfully working with others. My diverse life experiences and ability to speak fluent Spanish have equipped me with the ability to work with all types of students and their families.one of his students regardless of their learning profile.
From August of 2007 through January of 2013 I worked with at risk youth in a wilderness rehabilitation program called SUWS of the Carolinas. In addition to catching students up with their academics, I taught our middle and high school students communication, personal accountability, and life skills. As a Master Field Instructor, I played an integral part in the training of new hires, updating policy and procedures for accreditation purposes and resetting group cultures that had become toxic or unstable. My time at SUWS, working with students and staff, pushed me to develop and master my organizational skills and management strategies.
I earned my Undergraduate degree in History from Colorado State in 2004 and my Graduate Degree in Teaching at Western Carolina University in May of 2014. As a Graduate Assistant at Western Carolina I helped develop curriculum to align with the new NC Essential Standards, tutored struggling students, assessed student pacing guides and lesson plans, assumed lesson development and teaching duties for multiple classes, and evaluated teaching demonstrations-critiquing student teachers content knowledge and instructional presentations. I have a firm understanding of content knowledge, and a thorough grasp of the new Common Core Standards for middle and secondary education.
Following graduate school, I entered into the realm of corporate sales, working on 100% commission selling Verizon Wireless phones and services. Within a year I became a sales trainer for new hires and in 2016 I had the most pre-paid phone sales in North Carolina. My duties at Verizon Wireless included managing personal and business accounts, training new hires, and providing tech support to all my customers. While the money was fantastic, I longed for the opportunity to get back into the classroom.
I have been with Asheville Academy since 2017 after being recruited by my predecessor, Ben Chamberlain to teach Social Studies. Two years ago, I was promoted into the role of Lead Teacher, where I assumed the job duties of Mr. Chamberlain whenever he was away at a conference or on vacation. Since the pandemic, I have played an integral role building the strongest academic team I have ever had the pleasure to work with. I know the job, I know the program and I know the students. After spending the last six and a half years teaching Social Studies at Asheville Academy and two years of serving as Lead Teacher, I am excited to move into this leadership position and build on the work and reputation of my predecessor.
My wife and I have lived in West Asheville since getting married in 2012. We have three dogs, a cat and a 1960s fixer-upper that occupies much of our free time. On weekends we enjoy exploring the lakes and rivers of Western Carolina in our canoe and creating our own sanctuary through gardening and landscaping.
At Asheville Academy we take our academics and your child’s relationship to learning serious. Our students receive top notch instruction from licensed teachers who have a deep passion for their content areas. Students learn the study skills, executive function strategies, boundary setting, and how to appropriately advocate for their learning needs inside and outside the classroom. Thank you for your time and consideration of our services. Feel free to reach out with any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.